Cape Town – Gone are the days of Salt River, Woodstock and Maitland being seen as dangerous areas, as a new wave of companies relocate from the CBD.
“I will happily now walk down a street in Woodstock,” said Andrew Dewey, MD Swindon Property Group.
“Swindon are experiencing a great surge in demand for old factories and warehousing, which are now being converted to trendy offices, where use of space is optimised.”
Easier access to the main arterials (N1, N2) and affordable parking are considerations, but it’s the financial implications that are the main attraction.
Go on a tour with Dewey as he explores these various sites.
Rates lower than CBD
Woodstock and Observatory renovated offices are going for between R75 to R90 per square metres, while Salt River ones never go for more than R80 per square metre.
Factory spaces are being rented out at R35 to R45 square metres, depending on the size and quality. Maitland has industrial spaces going for anything from R30 to R45 per square metre.
Compare this to the Cape Town CBD, where B/C grade office range from R65 to R85 per square metre and A grade offices range from R90 to R170 per square metre. The Green Point and De Waterkant has offices ranging from R110 to R160 per square metre.
There is a lack of yield-based investment stock, but a good stock of owner-occupier properties and redevelopment opportunities,” said Dewey.
Most opportunities lie in redeveloping existing buildings and unlocking additional value, he said. “Examples include converting large industrial to multi-tenanted industrial, thereby increasing rental rates,” he said.
From industrial to modernised offices
“Examples also include converting traditional industrial to modernised office standards.”
Covered parking is half the price of the CBD and there is more access to unmetered street parking.
Swindon is currently involved in a letting campaign for Debem House in Observatory, with the former Sharp House being redeveloped into modern A-grade office space.
Swindon has also been involved in the sale of Kings Cross, 5 Brickfield, 10 Brickfield, 10 Briar, 12 Shannon Street, 12 Pickwick, 30 Queenspark, 62 Sir Lowry, 265 Sir Lowry – all of which have been redeveloped or are earmarked for future redevelopment.
"We have also assisted in the leasing of units in the Woodstock Exchange, Salt Circle, the Pals Building and The Stockyard, which are all successful office redevelopments."
Swindon discusses the change in the area, outside the King's Cross office complex in Woodstock.
Maitland on the rise
Another large site sold by Swindon for about R16m on the Maitland, Salt River border was to be redeveloped into a creative multi-tenanted retail and office building with screed flooring and floor to ceiling windows.
“Maitland is still a while away from being an office node, but as developers start buying and redeveloping this could potentially change in the next five to 10 years as industrial rentals continue to improve for well-located and neat clean units,” he said.
“Woodstock and Salt River have worked well because of the residential community supporting the businesses in a number of ways, from labour to shopping and spending to creating a community feel.”
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